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Traveling with your cat on an airplane can be stressful and confusing, but sometimes you have to do it. So how do cats go to the bathroom on a plane?

Whether you’re taking your furry friend on vacation with you or moving somewhere across teh country, sometimes you’ll have to load them up on the airplane with you and take them along for the ride. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as just carrying them in your arms and holding them while you fly. There are strict rules about traveling with pets. How do they go to the bathroom?

The easiest way for cats to go to the bathroom on an airplane is to bring along a portable litter box for them to use. Just take your cat and everything you need to the bathroom and set up the litter box for them, then just wait for them to take care of business!

Are you planning on taking your cat on a plane trip? If so, you may be wondering how the little guy is going to go to the bathroom. In this article, we will discuss how cats go to the bathroom on an airplane. We'll talk about whether or not they are allowed on planes in the first place, and then we'll give you tips for traveling with your kitty. We'll then get into the details about how cats can use the bathroom while flying so they don't make a mess.

To ensure we provide you with nothing but the best, most accurate content possible, we vet everything in great detail before hitting that publish button. On top of the research we do, a topic like this one is also easy to talk about from personal experience. Fun fact, I’m a cat guy and I’ve had cats for as long as I can remember. So I know all about flying with them!

Table of contents


Are Cats Allowed on Airplanes?

Before we get into how cats go to the bathroom on an airplane, let's talk about whether cats are even allowed on airplanes in the first place. I mean sure, if you have a private plane of your own, you can do a lot of things. But what about if you're just going on vacation or moving somewhere and need to take your cat on a commercial flight with you?

Fortunately, you are not alone. Cats are one of the most popular pets in the United States, and plenty of people fly with them every day. In fact, many airlines have policies in place specifically for flying with cats. So, before you book your ticket, be sure to check with the airline to see if they allow cats on board.

For the most part, you are able to fly with your cat (as a carry-on) as long as you follow the airline's guidelines. This usually means that you will need to book a special type of ticket for your cat or pay the pet carry-on fee. You may also be required to provide proof of vaccination and a health certificate from your veterinarian. And, of course, you'll need to make sure that your cat is comfortable in their kennel and that they remain inside the entire time.

How Do You Travel With a Cat?

Traveling with a cat isn't as difficult as you might think. Since cats are usually fairly small (smaller even than most small dog breeds), you can just bring a kennel or cat carrier as your carry-on. There are restrictions to using a cat carrier or a kennel as a carry-on that will vary from airline to airline, but you just mostly have to keep your pet in the carrier the entire time and it must fit under the seat in front of you.

There are also some restrictions on breed and size when it comes to bringing pets on the airplane with you, but most cats will not have any problems since they're all usually pretty small and can easily fit in a cat carrier or kennel. You can check with your airline to see if there are any specific restrictions for flying with a cat.

Another thing you'll want to consider before flying with your cat is how they handle stress. Some cats do fine with travel, while others may get anxious or even sick. If your cat is prone to stress or anxiety, you may want to ask your veterinarian about using a calming medication during the flight.

And since stress can lead to pets having to go to the bathroom, let's get into how they can do that while flying.

How Do Cats Go To The Bathroom On An Airplane?

Since cats don't really understand aviation or flying, much less being surrounded by potentially hundreds of people in a small space, they can get pretty stressed out during a flight. Stress can lead to cats having to use the restroom, but how can they do that while you're on a plane?

Let's look at a couple of different ways: a portable litter box and cat diapers.

Using a Portable Litter Box on a Plane

If you have cats that live inside with you, I'd be willing to guess that they use a litter box to do their business. So, why not bring a litter box with you on the plane? That might sound a bit crazy at first, but it's actually pretty simple and is the easiest way for your cat to feel comfortable going to the bathroom on a plane.

There are a few different types of portable litter boxes that you can use, but the key to an effective one is that it's collapsible and easy to carry, like this one from Amazon (it even comes with a collapsible water bowl!). When it comes time for your cat to go to the bathroom, you can pull a portable litter box out of your bag and take your cat to the bathroom.

The easiest way to do this is to carry a couple of Ziploc bags filled with cat litter. This way, you can unfold the litter box, put some kitty litter in it that your cat is used to, and then wait for them to take care of business. It might take a couple of minutes for them to get comfortable with their new surroundings, but hopefully they will make their way to the litter box and use the bathroom.

Cleaning up Pet Waste While Flying

Using bags filled with kitty litter doubles as a way to quickly and easily pick up the cat waste once they're done using the bathroom. You can just use the bag to pick up the waste and dispose of it. Some airplanes will have a place where you can dispose of it in the bathroom (especially for longer flights), while other times you might have to keep the waste on you until you land.

That's why it's vital to have these bags with you!

Using Pet Diapers for Your Cat While Flying

While using a portable litter box might be the best way for your cat to use the bathroom while flying, not all cats will be able to use it or be comfortable with it. If your cat is resistant to using a litter box, you might want to consider using cat diapers instead.

Pet diapers are a bit different than regular diapers since they have a hole in the back for your cat's tail. This way, they can still go to the bathroom while wearing them without making a huge mess. The biggest issue with these is that if your cat isn't used to ever wearing one, they might not like it and could end up getting very stressed out.

If you do decide to use pet diapers, I recommend starting to get your cat used to them a few weeks before your flight. This way, they have time to get used to the feel of wearing them and won't be as stressed out when it comes time to fly.

Tips and Tricks for Flying With a Cat

Now that you know how your cat can use the restroom while flying, let's look at a few tips and tricks -- as well as a few items you should consider bringing along -- to make the process go as smoothly as possible.

First and foremost, if your cat is resistant to using a portable litter box or pet diapers, you might want to consider not flying with them. The last thing you want is for your cat to be so stressed out during the flight that they make a mess in their carrier.

If you do decide to fly with your cat, try to get them used to their carrier a few weeks before the flight. This way, they won't associate it solely with travel and will be more likely to feel comfortable in it.

When packing for your flight, make sure to bring along plenty of food and water (and a collapsible food and water bowl) for your cat, as well as any medications they might need. It's also a good idea to have a photo of your cat in case they manage to escape their carrier while on the plane.

Finally, try to book a window seat so your cat can have a view of the outside and won't feel so claustrophobic during the flight.

Flying with a cat doesn't have to be stressful! By following these tips, you can make sure that your cat has a comfortable and safe flight. Happy flying and happy travels with your feline friend!